Trust is such a big issue. Without trust, how can I actually receive anything? How can I open my heart to any good thing that comes my way if I can’t trust?
When I was a teen and in my early twenties, I had a terrible time trusting people. I was very sarcastic, defensive and deflective. I didn’t let anyone see my real feelings. That is a long story that has a lot to do with my broken family, but the result was loneliness and isolation. It also led to a number of really bad choices; foolish choices that could have been avoided if I’d just let someone in. If I’d only just trusted, someone.
Most of you know that I regularly record music. I also hire people from all over to play on my recordings with me. Here is how that process works. I record the “bones” of a song, probably just one or two guitar parts and the primary vocal part, and then I usually hire a bass player to play bass on the song first. I send what I have to that person and let them do whatever they think is appropriate and they send me the results. I lean on their gifting because they’re always a much better bass player than I am! Hahaha! I hire them because I trust in their gift. 95% of the time, I absolutely LOVE what I get. The process then continues for the drums when I use them, the other supporting instruments and the harmony vocals. Of course, I have my regular people I turn to for most of this stuff and trust is something that has developed over time, but a great deal of trust is required because I need to pay for the part in advance. This is all done online and mostly through one website that accommodates such things really well. That’s the way the system works nowadays. There have been so many times that I have gotten parts that made me literally weep with joy. Especially the parts I get from my favorite fiddle player from Nashville named Rachel. She has made me cry so many times. Other times, it has been a sax player from Italy I have partnered with and also the singer from Argentina who does harmonies for me regularly. These people send me to music heaven on a regular basis. Every time I get a part though, I experience deep joy and satisfaction. This is only because I trust these people. I trust them enough to pay them in advance and I am rewarded with GREAT joy. I think it’s important to trust people in advance.
This same thing happens all the time in the Zoom meetings I’m involved with all over the world. Italy, France, Switzerland, China, New Zealand and now even Kazakhstan. Great joy comes from trust. I can’t tell you how many times I have been speechless by the prayers and encouragement from so many people from all over the world, many of whom I have never met in person. Many of these people I consider to be my trusted friends.
Nothing is gained with suspicion. NOTHING. Suspicion is a defensive wall that exists when a person has not developed any discernment. Suspicion is ignorance. If I have sharp discernment, I never need to be suspicious, only careful. There is a big difference.
A suspicious and defensive posture will block things that may be damaging but will also stop you from receiving anything valuable as well. Defensive walls block out everything. If I defend myself against you, I am also building a wall between myself and God and his people.
People have occasionally “betrayed” my trust from time to time in my life, but God has always been faithful to heal the resulting wounds and redeem the entire process. It is totally worth the risk.
“Trust in the Lord with all your heart and lean not on your own understanding. In all your ways acknowledge Him, and He will direct your paths.” Proverbs 3:5-6
At the last supper, Jesus finally commanded his disciples to do something. This is called the commandment of Christ by many and is the only time he actually did that.
“A new command I give you: Love one another. As I have loved you, so you must love one another. By this everyone will know that you are my disciples, if you love one another.” John 13:34-35
Jesus said the above immediately after he dismissed Judas from the last supper table. It was the perfect time for him to illustrate what trust and love actually looks like. Judas was seated in the place of highest honor, right next to Jesus. This was made clear in the verses just before that last passage.
“Leaning back against Jesus, he asked him, “Lord, who is it?”
Jesus answered, “It is the one to whom I will give this piece of bread when I have dipped it in the dish.” Then, dipping the piece of bread, he gave it to Judas, the son of Simon Iscariot.”
I firmly believe that Jesus was giving Judas one last chance to repent. Wow.
If I am supposed to love and trust people in the same way that Jesus did, then it needs to look a lot like that. Jesus had NO defensive walls with people. He endured the very worst abuse, offering no defenses at all and received every blessing he got from every person who offered one, regardless of who they were. I need to emulate those characteristics every day as a disciple of Jesus.
Tomorrow, I have my second Zoom meeting with the young lady in Kazakhstan. I already know she is going to totally bless me, with her enthusiasm and courage and also with her trust. She’ll probably also have some very poignant questions and observations about life too. It’s always that way, my friends. Her zeal, her revelations and her obedience to God’s instructions just fill me with Joy.
I was once prophesied to by a ragged-looking heroin addict on the street in a square in Stockholm. It was a very poignant word that came directly from God, specifically for me at that very moment. He was a complete stranger and saw me across the crowded noonday square, approached me and offered his insight. We got into an interesting conversation afterwards where I explained to him how much God loved him, and that was that. We didn’t even swap names. The very next day I ran into him again at the Swedish church I was attending at the time. Lisa and I happened to be hanging out there and he walked in with his roommate, saw me and walked right up to me again.
“I bet you don’t remember who I am.” he said flatly.
“Of course I do. I told my wife all about you and our conversation yesterday.”
“I prayed to Jesus last night and I’m not a heroin addict any more. I brought my roommate with me. He doesn’t want to be a heroin addict any more either.”
Boom. Just like that. I trusted the “word” he had for me because I recognized the source of the word and, thankfully, did not judge the messenger. He got saved and delivered from heroin and so did his roommate. That experience had a profound and lasting effect on me. It has become my determination to trust as often and as much as it is appropriate. Yes, one needs to use a great deal of discernment. That is a given. Discernment is not a locked door though. It is a door that easily opens in the right circumstances and my door has been opened to many people over the years. Consequently, I have a lot of trusted friends. Spiritual brothers and sisters and spiritual children and grandchildren as well. I’m spoiled and rich and I fully intend to continue to live this way, regardless of the consequences.
To be honest, I LOVE my life.